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The difference between the Edge 605 & 705
Both units are essentially the same. The only difference is the Edge 705 incorporates a much more accurate barometric pressure based altimeter. The 605 uses GPS data for elevation, which is very inaccurate with errors up to 30meters. When using a 605, we recommend you correct the elevation data from the unit using our elevation data to get the most accurate results.
Which file should I use?
An Edge 605 or 705 can use a TCX, a GPX Route or a GPX Track. Each have their pros and cons, so read each description carefully to understand which file format is best for you. I would strongly recommend trying each format on a simple test route around your neighborhood in order to get a solid feel for the pros/cons before using it for actually navigating a ride.
GPX TracksThis is the best format, as long as you do not need custom cuesheet entries
A GPX Track contains the hundreds/thousands of points used to draw a map, but it doesn't contain cuesheet note information, so any custom created cuesheet entries will NOT be present when you navigate this route. However, the GPS unit will strictly follow the plotted route and will also provide you with true navigation style turn by turn instructions, with a stylized map and a superimposed direction arrow. Additionally, the compass on your GPS unit will always point in the direction you need to go, and you can see your route plotted on the Edge's map display. As long as you don't need any custom cuesheet entries, this is the best format to use.
GPX RoutesSub-optimal, not useful for most people
A GPX file contains only the cuesheet points, but doesn't contain the hundreds or thousands of points required to draw the map. Since the GPX Route file only contains the cuesheet notes, the Garmin will use its internal maps to route from cuesheet entry to cuesheet entry. Often times this means it will take different streets than expected, so total overall mileage is almost guaranteed to be shorter. It usually calculates the routes to be as short as possible. As a result, a GPX Route is rarely a desirable format to use on the Edge 705, and we recommend staying away from it unless you know what you are doing. One "benefit" is that the custom cues you create on RWGPS will be present, but how the Edge 705 actually routes you between them is anyones guess.
TCXFor navigation, good compromise between GPX Route and Track if you need custom cuesheet entries
Great training aid - Ride With GPS will be releasing training features using this format soon.
It offers the best of the GPX Track and Route - turn notifications while explicitly following the route you plotted on our maps. The downside is the lack of "true navigation". It just memorizes the location of each cuesheet entry, and when you ride within 20-30 feet of the point, it beeps and says the name of the entry, such as "Left", "Right" or "Food". It doesn't say "Turn left on 15th avenue", and, if you approach this turn from the opposite direction (say you got turned around mid-route and came at the turn from the other side), it will still just say "Left". But, once you recognize that limitation, the benefit of notifications plus staying exactly on track makes this, most likely, the most desirable format if your route contains custom cuesheet entries.
One note: the TCX file is intended as a training aid. The Garmin Edge series will have a "virtual partner" that you are racing against - the partner's speed is set by the timestamps we put in the file. For now this is very basic - we don't set the timestamps to be of any help while training. So if you are just navigating a route, trying to avoid being lost rather than trying to maintain a certain speed, you should turn off virtual partner inside the GPS unit.
OK, so how do I get the file on my GPS?
To put a GPX file on your Edge 605 or Edge 705, export the desired file from our site. Once you have the file saved on your computer (remember where you saved it, whether that's the desktop or downloads folder or wherever), you can transfer it to the Garmin. Every computer is different, but the general idea is that the Edge 605/705 acts like a USB thumb drive. Plugging it into your computer should allow you to view the files stored on the unit. Once you have it plugged in, open up the "drive" associated with the GPS unit, then open the "Garmin" folder inside the drive. You'll now see a list of several files/folders. One of the folders is called "GPX" - if it doesn't exist you may need to create it. You should copy (drag the icon) the file to this folder. If you are transferring a TCX file, you will place it in the Courses folder (which is also found under the root Garmin folder). Once done, safely remove the GPS unit. "Safely remove" means follow your systems instructions for removing a USB flash drive. This, on Windows systems, is usually done by clicking the remove hardware icon in the lower right corner of the screen, next to the clock. On OS X, you can eject the device from the Finder to accomplish this.
Once the file is transferred to the Edge and the Edge is safely removed from the computer, power the device up. If you placed a GPX file in the Garmin/GPX folder, you will find it on your device under Menu - Where To? - Saved Rides. If you placed a TCX file in the Garmin/Courses folder, you will find your route under Menu - Training - Courses. From there it should be fairly self explanatory. Please practice navigating a route with something simple, around your neighborhood, and don't try to do this the first time before a big ride with friends.
Installing Free Open Street Map data
Some people purchased an Edge 705 for cheap because it didn't come with Garmin's City Navigator maps installed. This is fine, because there is a complete and comprehensive set of free maps (wikipedia style user-generated maps) from the Open Street Maps project.
Option 1: Let us do the work.
We'll send you the OSM maps preloaded onto an SD card for $25. See details and purchase your preloaded OSM maps here.
Option 2: Download the maps and load them onto a Micro SD card.
- Choose a mapset from this link - Since I am in North America, I use either Mantlik's contoured maps or Dave's
- After downloading, copy the IMG file to an SD card. You will need at least a 4GB SD card. If you haven't inserted your SD card into your Edge 705, you'll want to insert it and power up the unit - this will create the necessary folders on the device. Once this has been done, insert the SD card back into your computer.
- The SD card can only have one IMG file on it at a time, and the name of that file must be GMAPSUPP.IMG. I keep the filename on my computer descriptive, then rename it once I copy it to the SD card.
- Copy the file to the GARMIN folder on the SD card, then rename to GMAPSUPP.IMG (usually accomplished by right clicking the icon and selecting rename).
- Once the file is copied, safely remove (right click on the icon in the lower right of screen for Windows users) the SD card from your computer.
- Insert the card and power up the Garmin.
- Go to the configuration menu, then Settings->Map, and select the map type.
Why does my track jump to nearby roads?
If you are riding on a bike path or on a trail that is near a road, you may end up with data that occasially snaps to the road, then back to the path. When you're zoomed out this might look like triangles or zig zags on your map. Fixing this is easy, it is just a setting on your Garmin Edge 705 or 605.
How to fix: Settings -> Map -> Lock on Road -> Off